Honda Civic Hybrid — Shocking Battery Failure Rates

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Aleckin, Feb 26, 2014.

  1. cycledrum

    cycledrum PSOCSOASP

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    I had not seen the CR survey report on Civic vs. Prius battery failure rates. This cures me of toying with the idea of getting an Accord Hybrid. In 10 years we'll see how Honda is doing, but for now, forget their hybrids.

    The kicker is, once they replace the hybrid battery, that battery has a MUCH shorter warranty than the original (thought I read 3 years). Might be smart to sell the car, but the resale value must be pretty bad.

    Only a handful of Civic Hybrids listed per given year on CL SF Bay Area, maybe 5 versus a hundred Prius'.

    Fahget Honda hybrids :cautious:
     
    #61 cycledrum, Nov 9, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2014
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  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i would give them a few years, but it would be hard to believe that honda would make the same mistake.
     
  3. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    Cycledrum, I think your original warranty just continues, no extension with the replacement. I'm ok with that, they're just honouring the original deal. That said, there's no way we would have bought our 06 civic hybrid if we'd known what was coming.
     
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  4. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    I agree with Bisco; I'm not worried about Honda repeating past mistakes.
    But I have to say that I am not impressed by how the IMA customers were handled. Too bad, really, because Honda used to be my all time favorite auto company and I still prefer their cars over Toyota.
     
  5. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    I'm thinking the execs got the message; you'd have to be brain dead to miss it. They did come through with a gratis battery even tho we were some distance out of warranty. But then there's the YEARS of dealing with the flakey, half hooped first battery, and Honda stonewalling.

    They blew it, lost track of who keeps them in biz.
     
  6. cycledrum

    cycledrum PSOCSOASP

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    I'm not sure 'past mistakes' is fitting for 8 model years of sky-high battery failure rates. Is the 'past mistake' the IMA system?
     
  7. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    The past mistakes was pushing the NiMH battery too far, then acting like there wasn't a problem, and not taking care of their customers.

    None of the current Honda hybrids use NiMH anymore. All the new models, including the IMA Civic, use lithium now, and I don't think Honda is to obtuse to make the same mistake there. Do the Insight2 and CRZ have such high failure rates? They came out afterwards, still using NiMH.
     
  8. neez

    neez Member

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    Yes, the IMA system itself was the wrong direction and Honda knows that now, as evident by the new Accord. The problem was the IMA system sounded good on paper, but didn't really make the mpg gains that could compete with the prius. So they had to utilize the electric motor longer and deep cycle the NIMH battery more to help make up for lack of efficiency. After the reprogramming to prevent battery damage, owners started reporting mileage more like 35-40mpg, very PO'd owners for sure. IMA is stupid, and relies too heavily on the ICE.

    The accord went the opposite direction and uses a huge electric motor this time. So i think it'll cycle the battery more like the prius does, i think there's less worry here. But the price is kinda high, $30k and they won't budge. With cars like the altima acheiving 38mpg highway, for $7k less, it's hard to justify going to the hybrid accord, especially with the small trunk. I'm not even sure i could fit my baby stroller in there.
     
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  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    It was rumoured, by disgruntled owners, that the software update also made the damn IMA warning light almost impossible to trigger. This was a prerequisite for warranty claims.
     
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  10. GregP507

    GregP507 Senior Member

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    Honda is probably using their batteries more efficiently, and that mostly explains the reliability problems.
     
  11. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    When done right, a IMA like system can work well. The hybrid systems in the Jetta, Sonata, and Pathfinder are similar. Honda's new one motor system cam be viewed as an IMA descendent.

    It, like most things Honda, was overpriced new, and the EPA numbers should have been revised with the rollout of the software update.
     
  12. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web i3 and Prime

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    I agree:
    The first generation IMA was hobbled by not having a clutch to the engine so the motor did not have to deal with engine mechanical overhead for EV only mode. Although the engine was efficient, being part of the flywheel hobbled the motor. Think "dual clutch" and that is the way to go for a single motor system.

    In the past, I've long though the motor should have been permanently coupled to the shifter gear with slip-shaft. Then a single clutch could have been used with a motor-only position and an engine start-stop position. This would combine the efficiency of a manual transmission with the EV capability of the motor and motor assist for lower engine rpm.

    Bob Wilson
     
  13. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    A straight parallel hybrid is not going to match an HSD in overall drivetrain efficiency in general. I get the feeling that Honda forced the IMA system to near Prius level performance by forcing the battery to operate out of its long term comfort zone. More specifically, ICE efficiency was prioritized over low battery SOC.

    Back when IMA was new, I though Honda would stake out the 40 MPG, cheap and small hybrid territory and leave the 50 MPG, expensive and big hybrid to Toyota. Too bad Honda did not see things my way LOL
     
  14. DeadPhish

    DeadPhish Senior Member

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    Honda has always had this 'thing' about beating Toyota to being first.
    • If you'll remember the Insight I beat the Prius I to N America by a few months. Decent but it didn't last very long.
    • Then the Accord Hybrid beat the Camry Hybrid to N America by 6 months or so. Dead in the water when the two were compared
    • Then the smaller less expensive 'Prius-killer' beat the Prius c by several months as well. Result?

    Honda seems to have been painted into a corner by Toyota ( & Ford ) in the 90's when the decisions were being made on how to design a hybrid system of power. IMHO everything that Honda has done from Day 1 is a compromise with the sole mission to 'Beat TM to the market'... at least in the public's eye but... 'but do it on a minimal budget as fast as you can. We must appear to be the innovators.'

    Honda can always state that they brought the first hybrid car to the US from Japan and they can always state that their engineering expertise allowed them to deliver the first hybrid sedan in NA. Both statements are true no matter what else can be said by TM or anyone else.

    Stodgy old slow-footed Toyota can only agree....:cool:
     
  15. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    It won't match the HSD type system, it just as to be priced right for the gains it provides. Honda botched the battery software for bigger mpg numbers, and it was further compounded by owners lugging the manual equipped ones.
    We had hopes with the Insight2, but should have known better when the Civic hybrid was priced the same as the Prius.
     
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